Questions tagged [grammar]

文法. A collective term for syntax (the way sentences are put together) and morphology (forms of words, including the way new words are put together). Often used to describe function words such as particles, to describe word endings, and to talk about general sentence structure.

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Difference between 「~てからでないと」and 「~ないことには」

Both of these grammar can be translated to English as A~てからでないと/~ないことにはB = Unless A is done, cannot do B From what I can find, ~てからでないと stresses the order or sequence of actions, that until A is ...
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1answer
180 views

Specific use of してまで

Recently I've been reading Michael Emmerich's "New Penguin Parallel Text" for Japanese short stories. In Yoshimoto Banana's "A Little Darkness," there's a passage that describes how the narrator's ...
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155 views

When is である/な Needed for Certain Words?

While studying grammar I noticed that some words require using である/な when used with a noun/な-adjective respectively. I wanted to see if there was a pattern between which words required them and which ...
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198 views

Are both of these correct sentences: 「ここに住所を書いてくださいますか?」「ここに住所を書いてくださいませんか?」?

I believe 「ここに住所を書いてくださいますか?」 means “Could you please write the address here?” And 「ここに住所を書いてくださいませんか?」 means “Would you please write the address here?” An exercise I’m doing shows the second ...
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679 views

Casual Speech Particles in Classical Japanese

I'm writing a simple Japanese skit for my class and there is a place where an ancient samurai needs to speak a few sentences of Classical Japanese. I can mostly make the sentences, but it seems weird ...
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1answer
128 views

Help understanding だからこそ、という場合もある

I'm struggling to understand the sentence in the exchange below. To explain the context, these characters have been shipwrecked and landed on an unknown island. They find that several of their ...
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1answer
309 views

Is it grammatically correct to use もし and/or 〜ば form along with the 〜たい form to convey desire in a conditional clause?

My impression when using conditionals, most of the time, you lose the ability to express desire. For example, when conjugating to -たら、you have to use the past tense of the verb. Is it grammatically ...
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1answer
300 views

“~Ni” or “~De”?

Should I use (に or で) for the following lines? Since they are time periods, I thought に would be correct, according to Times The particle ni is usually used with times: Go-ji ni ...
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1answer
175 views

Is it ungrammatical to say Nがなく instead of Nなく when it means “without N”?

The phrase Nなく means "without N" and is used to modify verbs, as in: 彼は私を躊躇なく殴った。 He hit me without hesitation. In sentences like this, is it ungrammatical or unnatural to say Nがなく instead of ...
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186 views

The uses of である

I understand that である is most commonly used to replace だ/です at the end of a sentence in written expressions. But outside this usage, I can't find much explanation on how to use this structure. In ...
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1answer
163 views

"A: いつごろ切符を予約しましたか。 B: 3か月前です” why should it be です but not でした?

"A: いつごろ切符を予約しましたか。  B: 3か月前です” why should it be です but not でした?
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237 views

What is the difference between といったところです and というところです?

銀行に変化を促しているのがタイの中央銀行です。 日本で言えば、日銀が腰を上げて、変革の旗振り役をしているといったところです。(source) Could we replace といったところです by というところです here? If yes, what would be the difference? If not, why?
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3answers
2k views

といいんです and といいんですけど

What exactly is the difference between these two phrases. How does けど/が affect the meaning and how does it relate to its meaning of 'but'?
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Using 「に」, 「にとって」 and 「に対して」 with adjectives

I read these two questions but I still don't understand the relation between the use of the 「に」 particle with adjectives and other structures such as 「にとって」 and 「に対して」. On the first link, Axioplaseさん ...
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204 views

来た2日後に vs 来て2日後に vs 来てから2日後に

日本に来た2日後にこの本を買った。 日本に来て2日後にこの本を買った。 日本に来てから2日後にこの本を買った。 I created these sentences from similar-looking examples I found on Google. Are they all grammatical? These all mean "I bought this book two ...
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2answers
426 views

Meaning/use of ように in this sentence

鳥の絵が得意になり、クリスマスにハトの絵を贈ってくれるようにもなった。 I cannot understand the meaning of ようにもなった in this sentence. I know that 鳥の絵が得意になり、 means "I became good/strong at drawing birds and..." ...
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715 views

What does ~ながらにして mean?

Can someone please explain the bold grammar? せんてんてき 【先天的】 《ダナ》生まれながらにして持っていること
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149 views

What is the nuance between 内に and 間に in these sentences?

This will be a long question. I referred to the other questions that were already answered, Difference between 前に and うちに When describing time span, are 間 {あいだ} and 内 {うち} interchangeable? What'...
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156 views

ものだ expressing ambiguous emotions/concern?

This article lists many examples of using ものだ to articulate "deep concern." The author of this article explains that when you connect words which indicate desire like …たい and 欲しい with ものだ, your speech ...
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1answer
199 views

Verb after な-adjective, is it necessary to complete the sentence?

I read somewhere that 形容動詞 are a special subclass of nouns. Contrarily 形容詞, the い adjectives, are actually a lot more similar to verbs. During the time that I have been learning Japanese language (...
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1answer
183 views

Regarding がある/のある

I'm writing somthing for my Japanese class currently, and I wrote 「おいしい食べ物のあるレストラン」and I thought that when ある was modifying a noun you could change it to の but my teacher corrected it to が. Are there ...
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91 views

What's the difference in comparative use between ~ + の様に / みたい / が如く, etc.?

This question has been on my mind since I've watched SEGA's announcement the other day about Yakuza's second installment getting a remake. The original title of the game is [龍]{りゅう}が[如]{ごと}く, meaning "...
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160 views

Couldn't “ni” particle be used in this example?

I'm a total newbie learning japanese as you will see, so please be patient with me. I have this sentence from my textbook: Shiken no toki jisho o minai de kudasai! Because it was a new lesson, I ...
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192 views

ではない in Relative Clauses

I have read in several sources that it is grammatically incorrect to use は (topic particle) in relative clauses. However, I am almost certain that I have seen constructions like the following: ...
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1answer
1k views

How to say “Should I [do something]?”

There was a similar question here, but it was more along the lines of "Should we do something together?", and I'm not sure it fits my case. For example, how do you say "Should I bring something to the ...
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1answer
1k views

~てない - ambiguity between ている and てある

手を上げてない人は私だけです。 上げてない is the negative form of てある right? Most people would omit the い in ている. So for me it is hard to differentiate if てある or ている is used since both sounds the same (negative only). ...
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72 views

What's the difference between ないわけにはいかない and ずにすまない??

I think they both mean that you have to do something because there is a social pression like なければならい、but I'm not certain that I can use them interchangeably. Could somebody confirm it?
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71 views

transitive vs intransitive verbs in relative clauses

Is there a difference in interpretation or how one would understand sentences that use a transitive vs intransitive verb? e.g. in the below 味噌汁を入れたマグカップ vs 味噌汁が入ったマグカップ 「でもお前、俺のこと好きだったじゃん」 「……...
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166 views

Understanding of をだけを

In a comment on this question it was pointed out that the combination "をだけ" appears a lot in a Google search, despite my thought that it was ungrammatical. On closer inspection it seems that many of ...
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Expressing “huh” tag?

How would you express this type of tag? For example: Lovers, huh? That’s what you think they are? Would って work? 恋人って?そうと思う?
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86 views

Using 場合 with adjectives

I was learning the uses of 場合は from japanesetest4you.com (in the sense "in the event of"), and couldn't help but notice that, although it behaves like a noun, its uses with adjectives were not listed. ...
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ところ、よう and other words of many uses

This may be a bad question, since it's not very specific and I am very long winded. I've studied Japanese on and off 7 years, though my level is very low and I never had much immersion besides a year ...
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1answer
129 views

Difference between ようか・まいか and ようが・まいが

So I'm cramming for the N1 test next week and doing grammar exercises in the 日本語パワードリル book. I come across the following question and felt fairly confident in my answer: 友人に真実を_________ 悩んでいる。 ...
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126 views

When is it okay to not use desu?

I've been looking around for this, but all I can find is pretty basic stuff about desu. I've studied Japanese, but writing texts in Japanese still stumps me sometimes. Right now I'm wondering about ...
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83 views

Differences between “even if”/“no matter (how much)” structures: としても, ところで, ~ようが/と

I've encountered several forms that mean both "even if" (might be used for example with たとえ), and "no matter (how much)" (used with どんなに, いくら, etc). ~ても ~としても ~ところで ~ようが/と The only difference ...
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Usage of ところ to represent time with に and で

I am trying to understand the grammar of using ところ with に and で when using ところ to represent the time that actions have happened. These are (ungrammatical) sentences I made up: 1) ...
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110 views

Comparing nouns

Good day, I would like some clarification with regards to comparing nouns. In some references like Minna no Nihongo, the sentence formula would be something like A と B と + どちら のほうが/が + ...
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83 views

Why is a verb before a 格助詞 called 連体形?

As I have known, 格助詞 is not 体言.That is what I cannot understand.
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131 views

~ば vs ~ていれば in counterfactual conditionals

In l'électeur's answer here, he claims (with such confidence that he bolds the belief) that the correct way to say the English sentence "If I had turned right back then, I wonder what would have ...
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121 views

What does には mean in this case?

The sentence in question: 休日の繁華街は平和な賑わいに満ちていた。道行く人々の笑顔は眩しく、街灯はどこまでも明るく、一足早いクリスマス模様のショウウィンドウには、まるで世界中の幸せを寄せ集めて詰め込んだように華やかだった。 I would normally think of には following after something like ショウウィンドウ to ...
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Trouble ないで vs なくて

In this answer it is said that the usage of なくて is narrower than ないで(ないで can always replace なくて according to the logic explained and is ambiguous because of that) But in this question, the answer ...
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1answer
495 views

Different ways to express 'if A happens'

What is the difference between soshite, suruto and sorede? I am unable to distinguish the used-cases - they all seem to indicate 'If A happens then ....' jibun no koto o otona da to omoimasu ka? ........
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293 views

The て form, the と and もの constructions: gerund, participle, transgressive, or verbal noun?

As far as I understand, among the constructions (て-form verb), (て-form verb)いる, (finite verb)こと, (finite verb)の, (verb phrase)と, (finite verb)もの the form (2) unambiguously functions as a finite verb ...
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228 views

Further clarification on ~てある

This is a follow up to this question regarding the difference between てある and ている. So far I have come across two possible reasons to use てある: てある and ている can both be used to show states, however ...
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1answer
229 views

Ways other than て-form and たり~たり~ to connect several sentences and ideas together

I was wondering if someone can give me some examples because I don't remember quite well from my Japanese classes (because we rarely used this following way), how to connect more sentences? Until now ...
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1answer
674 views

What is the difference between に伴って and と共に?

Can somebody explain to me the difference between と共{とも}に and に伴{ともな}って? I believe that sometimes they can be used interchangeably, but not always. Moreover, their basic meanings also seem to differ. ...
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1answer
159 views

食べる時間__ない: Is さえ/も/ででも possible in this context? (Please read further)

*Please be advised that the following is from a practice book, with minimal altering. I sincerely hope this sort of question does not disagree with anyone here. The question in the book: ...
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1answer
150 views

Origin of 「~ にとって」?

I just encountered the 「~ にとって」 construction, as in: 「私にとって家族は大切です。」- "Family is important to me". I think I understand what it's supposed to mean. However, I couldn't find any information about the ...
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1answer
255 views

について vs に関して - the internet tells me they only change in formality, but Imabi disagrees?

について vs に関して 1a. 今から韓国に関して話してください。X 1b. 今から韓国について話してください。〇 Why is Imabi saying that 1a is wrong? Source All sources are saying that について and に関して have the same function, with the latter being more ...
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320 views

Is ないとダメ a stronger “must” than なければダメ?

I learned that one way to form a "must" sentence is "negative verb + conditional + ダメ・ならない・いけない": I mainly see two kinds of conditional used - the 仮定形 and と. For example 食べないとダメだ。 食べなければダメだ。 ...